Diversity in Saint Mary's seniors
By NATALIE BAILEY
Approximately 350 women will make the transition from students to alumnae Saturday, May 17.
While facing an increasingly tough economy, an estimated 70 percent of the class of 2003 are going into the work force full time.
According to Mary Regan-Kubinski, professor and chair of the nursing department, the market for nurses is excellent.
"Our graduates are not only getting jobs, they are getting jobs in the fields that they want to go into," she said.
Of the 14 graduates receiving a bachelor of science in nursing, most either have jobs or are entering the field. Graduates are entering diverse clinical specialties from midwifery to oncology.
The outlook is not as certain for students graduating with bachelor of arts and bachelor of business administration degrees.
"It looks like it will take three to four months for a lot of seniors to find a job," John Pauley, professor and department chair of communication studies, said.
Many students are moving to the area of the country where they want to relocate and then starting a job search from there. Also, 30 percent of the class is looking to enter graduate or professional schools.
Kerry O'Reilly, one of the 35 graduates receiving a bachelor of arts in elementary education, plans to enroll in Marquette University's top ranked speech pathology program.
"After taking a couple of classes in the speech pathology department and working at a local school for deaf children I decided I wanted to explore options other than elementary education," O'Reilly said.
The majority of education majors are planning on going directly into the field. In the past, 40 percent of education majors enter teaching in Parochial schools.
"Right now the suburban setting is very difficult area to get placement," said Helen Doyle, associate professor and chair of the education department. "Luckily most of our graduates are willing and able to go to under-served populations, including urban and Catholic, but it is difficult, very difficult."
The biology department is graduating 27 students, most of whom will go onto higher learning.
"Generally our students aren't looking for a job," Thomas Platt, professor and chair of the biology department, said. "They are generally looking to continue their education."
Platt reports that students are doing the same, if not better, than past years with acceptance to professional and graduate programs. Based upon the information provided to them, eight students plan to attend medical, dental or graduate school; five enter the work force and three enter into service for a year.
Catherine Roche, graduating with a bachelor of science in biology, is part of the 23 percent of graduates who will be spending the next year doing service. She will be volunteering with the Jesuit Volunteer Core in Yakima, Wash. Her duties will include working as a volunteer coordinator for high school students who would like to work with the elderly.
"I just figured that after four years of receiving an excellent education I want to give back what I have received," Roche said.
After the year of service from August to August, Roche plans on going into health care.
"I realize this is somewhat unconventional and people might see it as delaying entry into the real world," Roche said. "But we are going to be dealing with social injustice first hand and will be very much a part of the real world."
All News Stories for Friday, July 11, 2003